In cooperation between Aqdar, Blue Forest Company and Kenya’s forestry authorities, Khalifa Empowerment Program Aqdar has completed the first phase of the “Fifty Tree” initiative campaign, which was launched at Aqdar World Summit Dubai Expo 2020. It aims to plant 50,000 mangrove trees in the Republic of Kenya in celebration of the UAE’s Year of the 50th and Kenya’s 2030 development vision.
The tree planting was completed over a period of six months with the help of 144 volunteers from two local NGOs; Forest Restoration Agency and the Brain Youth Group. The work was overseen by the Regional Director of Kenya Forest Service to ensure compliance with Kenya’s tree planting, maintenance, protection and conservation standards.
The mangroves were planted in an area of 5 Hectares along Tudor Creek. That area was once a lush mangrove forest spanning over 1,641 Hectares. Today, only 215 Hectares or 13% remain of that forest. Kenya Forest Service, the Custodian of all of Kenya’s forests, is supporting grass-roots efforts by local NGOs to reverse the forest loss in Tudor Creek.
The project was funded with the help of the Tree for 50 corporate partners which include: Deloitte, SAP, Amazon, Speedo, Edrington, Rotary Club, DimensionN and Quest for Adventure.
Hon. Kariuki Mugwe, Ambassador of the Republic of Kenya to the UAE commented: “The Kenyan people are extremely grateful to the Tree for 50 stakeholders for their contribution in the restoration of our Mother Nature which we all depend on for our survival”
Dr. Ibrahim Aldabal, CEO of Khalifa Empowerment Program said: “We are proud to partner with Blue Forest and the Kenyan Authorities to implement this important environmental project, through which we write a new chapter in our journey towards placing global positive citizenship and sustainability at the core of our activities, which enhances international efforts to confront future climate changes.”
Vahid Fotuhi, Founder and CEO of Blue Forest, the company executing the project added: “Kenya’s mangrove forests are among the most beautiful and carbon-rich in the world. We are
honoured to be entrusted by AQDAR and KFS to do our part and, with the help of the local communities, restore the mighty mangrove forest of Tudor Creek.”
With Phase 1 now completed, the partners are aiming to restore the wider Tudor Creek mangrove forest as part of Phase 2. This will involve planting and protecting 10 million mangroves, in partnership with Community Forest Association members.
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The Khalifa Empowerment Program (AQDAR) is a community program that aims to empower all segments of society of all ages to face various challenges and empower them with the skills, knowledge and tools necessary to deal with present and future challenges to enhance the roles of society and enable them to creativity and innovation in what will service the human community. AQDAR was represented at the event by H.E. Sultan Al Ketbi, General Coordinator.
About Blue Forest
Blue Forest is a UAE-based developer of mangrove reforestation projects around the world. The company is currently restoring 400,000 Hectares of degraded mangrove forests located in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. The projects are financed through carbon credits, with the majority of the proceeds channeled to the local communities which live alongside the forests. For more information, please visit: www.blueforest.co